After buying a dream holiday abroad, most people’s attentions turn to blue skies and sun-kissed beaches. But perhaps travel insurance should be the first item on the holiday shopping list.
Rather than waiting until the last minute, there are significant advantages for those who buy travel cover early.
Telegraph Money rounds up five reasons why holidaymakers should not leave their travel insurance purchase until days before departure.
1) Covered if an airline or hotel goes bust
Travellers have been left out of pocket when airlines such as Monarch and, more recently, Primera Air have collapsed.
All Monarch passengers were flown home by the Civil Aviation Authority, the industry watchdog, at no extra cost to the individual.
However, those who were due to fly with Primera were left out of pocket and must try and claim their money back through their credit card provider.
Travel insurance policies can provide cover against this happening, paying out if consumers have problems with their airline.
2) Protects against illness before travel
One of the main reasons to take out travel insurance is in case the worst happens while away on holiday. But insurance can come in handy if illness means the policyholder is not able to make it in the first place.
There are many horror stories about airlines refusing to refund the cost of flights, even when a customer is seriously ill. Taking out travel insurance early ensures travellers are protected from the date of purchase until the end of the trip.
3) Time to check if an annual policy is more cost effective
For travellers who are able to plan holidays well in advance, it may be better to take out an annual travel insurance policy, rather than taking out cover for a single trip.
In some cases the cost of an annual policy may just be a few pounds more, yet will cover multiple trips abroad. Like with all annual insurance policies, remember to check that the policy is still suitable when the renewal date comes around. Those who are planning ahead have time to consider which option is more cost effective.
4) The level of cover can be tweaked
Holidaymakers can always add extra cover if their travel plans change. For example, if a beach holiday is now likely to include some extreme sports activities, travellers can add extra insurance to a policy.
Consumers should also check exactly what their insurer considers “extreme”. Some providers classify swimming with dolphins, horse riding and inflatable banana rides as extreme activities, while others do not.
- Reader Service: Ensure your policy covers all your needs with Telegraph Travel Insurance
5) It doesn’t cost any more
Unlike plane tickets, travel insurance pricing is not usually “dynamic”. This means it does not typically change depending on demand, or how far in advance it is bought.
If travellers plan on taking out travel insurance anyway, then booking early will not usually cost any more money, but has all the added benefits listed above.